Part II of my interview with the Extrapolater, after the jump.
What are your thoughts on the blogosphere and mainstream media?
The Line is getting blurry. One of the reasons I wanted to start blogging was that I started seeing bloggers getting writing opportunities that I would kill for. I specifically remember one of the Free Darko guys writing a piece for Slate.com, and thinking “If he can do it, so can I”.
And CNN/SI just did a “facial hair hall of fame”. C’mon. 27 bloggers did that idea first.
Is there something you want your blog to be known for?
Sure, good writing. Humor, definitely. I try to strike a balance, so that I’m not just a clown, but if people laugh and think, we’ve got a pretty good after-school special going.
What level of fame, if any, are you aspiring to? Would you like to do this for a living?
Fame terrifies me. I would like my name to be known and associated with quality, but I’ve always liked the idea of what I call “writer fame”, where everyone knows your work but has no idea what you look like, and you never have to perform in front of them. Obviously, someone like Tony Kornheiser or Jason Whitlock uses writing to become a famous talking head, so those days are waning. I’d honestly probably be pretty happy just to make a journeyman living out of writing and be able to quit working jobs that don’t involve writing all day. I got my first piece published elsewhere a month ago, so I feel like I’m working in the right direction.
Congrats. What did you get published and where?
I wrote a piece about the Bulls in the Tim Floyd years for Chicago Sports Review: http://www.chicagosportsreview.com/redesign/inthemeantime/contentview.asp?c=192531
I’m very curious, where did the name “The Extrapolater” come from?
I am so glad I get a chance to explain this. When I started the blog, I was in full-on Jon Stewart mode. I was doing daily fake news, including sports, so I thought of it as a newspaper, like The Philadelphia Inquirer or something. I figured I was taking factual stories and extrapolating them into the realm of the ridiculous and satirical, so I’d call my fake newspaper The Extrapolater. After a while, I realized that my fake sports stories were raking in hits, and nothing else was. I didn’t want to write just fake sports, so I just turned it into a general sports blog to give myself maximum freedom to learn how to write well.
If I had to characterize my blog style as it is now, I’d say I like to find what’s interesting in the obscure (NFL Europe, anyone?) and celebrate the human factors of the game (I’m not a stat-head, I like the drama, and the potential to transcend individual weakness through team play). I like having the freedom to write about what I want to every day, because it never becomes robotic, like an assignment can.
Where do you see the Extrapolater in a year? The blogosphere in general?
I wouldn’t mind getting to the 1,000 hits a day plateau, but the content won’t change much. I have recently started to pick up contributions from other great writers, so more of that might happen, which makes the blog more diverse and interesting. More brains to come up with ideas. I suspect the blogosphere in general will continue to be the same completely anarchic free market of ideas that it always has been. At least I hope so.